IGNITE Atlantic resident company Wild Roots Catering has now opened their doors to the public. They are located at 4200 Highway 308, Yarmouth.
Brandon Young · Posted: Feb. 12, 2021, 3:20 p.m. | Updated: Feb. 12, 2021, 6:10 p.m. | Saltwire.com
When you love what you do and your product is good, people will undoubtedly eat it up, come back for seconds and spread the word.Brandon Young · Posted: Feb. 12, 2021, 3:20 p.m. | Updated: Feb. 12, 2021, 6:10 p.m. | Saltwire.com
This sentiment couldn’t be closer to the truth for Kylie Brownell, chef and founder of Wild Roots Catering in Tusket, N.S.
While Brownell has long been involved in Nova Scotia’s culinary scene, serving at beloved restaurants such as The Canteen and The Bicycle Thief, her transition into the catering world came out of necessity.
“One of the reasons I thought of starting up Wild Roots Catering was because, in 2017, I got married in my parents’ backyard in Yarmouth and couldn’t find a caterer, so I decided to cater my own wedding. Everyone thought I was crazy, but it went really well. I thought if I couldn’t find someone to cater my wedding, then there were probably so many others out there like me.”
Having established Wild Roots Catering near the beginning of 2021, Brownell’s reception has been tremendous. Since she began advertising her business on Jan. 1, she’s booked more than 30 parties.
“We’ve had so much interest that I can’t book everybody in because it’s just me cooking right now,” says Brownell.
With an education in the culinary arts, Brownell’s creations aren’t your run-of-the-mill fish and chips and chicken entrees. Instead, dishes like sage-stuffed ravioli with brown butter, duck confit, and roasted squash soup with crispy prosciutto are among her offerings of elevated cuisine.
“What I’m offering is the next step up from that and more of a special event catering kind of thing,” says Brownell. “I’m not just doing chicken and haddock – people are excited by that.”
Brownell is just as excited. Bringing her talents into locals’ homes, the passionate cook shares excellent food and her passion for it with the community.
“It’s fun to communicate with the people and show them what you can do, and they ask questions about food,” says Brownell. “It’s just really fun to interact with everyone and to talk about food because I’m just so excited by it, and I like to share my knowledge.”
And the client’s enthusiasm for her services is spreading. Despite the parties she caters being reduced in size due to COVID-19 gathering restrictions, her business is receiving more than enough exposure.
“In a small town like this, word-of-mouth is everything, and it’s definitely helped spread the word about our business,” says Brownell, who notes she will soon set up shop with a restaurant of her very own. “Now, people are excited for the restaurant to open because they’ve heard about my catering from people who’ve had a dinner party, but they can’t get one because there aren’t any reservations available.”
With the hype surrounding her restaurant – planned to open in Tusket, N.S. – Brownell wants to provide a dining experience that the community has never known. Continuing to offer her special cuisine, she plans to provide an elevated casual dining experience, taking cues from her mentor Renée Lavallée, owner of The Canteen.
“I learned so much from her, like how to create menus, keeping the menu small and local, and changing with the season, which is awesome,” says Brownell.
Brownell says her restaurant, called Wild Roots, will be open five days a week for casual lunch orders. On weekend evenings, it will open for dinner and feature table service. Another addition is Saturday brunch.
“It’s exciting because there’s nothing like that around here, and I think it’ll be a big hit,” says Brownell.
In addition to serving delicious food, Brownell also plans to educate diners about where the ingredients they eat come from by working with local farmers and growers and highlighting their products with special events.
“I plan on doing farm-to-table dinners and bringing in the farmers to the restaurant to talk to people about their products and try to use their products as much as possible,” says Brownell. “There’s so many untapped things around here that we can show everyone.”
Meanwhile, Brownell says she hopes to open Wild Roots, the restaurant, in April and will soon drop “Catering” from her business name. With a company website to build and parties booked until the end of March, her plate is seriously full; however, her love for food and people keep her spirit well fed.
“Seeing the joy on people’s faces when they eat my food, there’s nothing like it,” says Brownell. “Feeding them something that they would’ve had 100 times, and then when they eat it from me, there’s a look on their face, like, ‘wow, how did you do that?’ — it just makes me happy, it makes me want to feed more people.”
For more information about Wild Roots Catering, visit their Instagram